Tag Archives: STEM

Tennessee State University and Tom Joyner Foundation partner to increase math, biology, chemistry teachers in State

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The State’s two largest school districts could see an increase in math, biology and chemistry teachers thanks to a partnership between Tennessee State University and national syndicated radio host Tom Joyner.

The initiative, which encourages community college graduates to attend TSU and teach in Memphis and Nashville after graduation, was announced at a news conference in Memphis on Friday, Sept. 9, a day before the Southern Heritage Classic game between TSU and Jackson State University.

The partnership seeks to get more students interested in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM. It will offer full scholarships to students graduating from five Tennessee community colleges: Southwest Tennessee, Nashville State, Volunteer State, Motlow State, and Columbia State.

“Today’s agreement with the Tom Joyner Foundation will help deserving students from five of our community colleges fulfill their desires to attend Tennessee State without the distractions of worrying about how to pay for tuition and fees,” said TSU President Glenda Glover. “Most importantly, we’re providing Memphis and Shelby County, along with the Metropolitan Nashville school system, with much needed STEM teachers for the students.”

Tom Joyner said he’s glad the initiative will not only help to produce more STEM teachers, but also ease students’ financial burdens.

“We always say that it’s one thing to go to school, but it’s another thing to stay in school,” said Joyner, whose mother was raised at then Tennessee A&I State College by his great aunt, Jane Elliott Hall. A building was named in her honor.

The Tom Joyner Foundation will provide 75 percent of the scholarship funds, and the rest will come from the NSF funded Tiger Teach Initiative and TSU’s Office of Community College Initiatives.

Sharon Peters, executive director of TSU’s Community College Initiatives, said the scholarship program is very much needed.

“We don’t have enough young people filling STEM careers,” Peters said. “A full scholarship to teach in math and biology or chemistry should lead to more teachers, particularly in Nashville and Memphis where we need them.”

School officials acknowledged the need for STEM teachers and lauded the partnership.

“As a system, we always have a shortage of science and math teachers,” said Roderick Richmond, director of student support services for Shelby County Schools. “So I’m really excited about the partnership with Tennessee State and the Tom Joyner Foundation.”

Students beginning their first semester of community college in fall 2016 will be eligible for the scholarship program. They must graduate from the two-year institution with a 3.0 grade point average, and maintain a 3.0 GPA while at TSU, according to requirements. Graduates must teach within the Nashville or Memphis area.

“This partnership gives our students an opportunity to fulfill their dreams,” said Tracy Hall, president of Southwest Tennessee Community College.

Tom Joyner, Jr., who oversees the foundation, agreed.

“This ensures that more students are able to graduate,” he said. “It ensures more children will be placed where they’re needed, the STEM classrooms of Tennessee, as well as throughout America.”

The Tom Joyner Foundation supports historically black colleges and universities with scholarships, endowments, and capacity building enhancements. Since it was created in 1997, the foundation has raised more than $65 million to help students stay in school.

Last year, the foundation selected TSU to be a “school of the month.” Under the designation, the foundation awarded scholarships to students throughout the month and featured TSU’s accomplishments on Tom Joyner’s weekly morning program.

To learn more about the Tom Joyner Foundation, visit: http://tomjoynerfoundation.org.

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 25 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

 

TSU, Vanderbilt Receive Nearly $1 Million to Increase Minority STEM Ph.D.’s

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) —Increasing the number of minority students who earn a Ph.D. in science, technology, engineering and math is the aim of a new “bridge to doctorate” program being launched by a coalition of Tennessee universities and led by Tennessee State University and Vanderbilt University.

Dr. Lonnie Sharpe
Dr. Lonnie Sharpe

The National Science Foundation recently awarded $987,000 to TSU to launch the new program as an expansion of the Tennessee Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, or TLSAMP. TLSAMP is a NSF-funded collaborative effort by 10 Tennessee colleges and universities to significantly increase and improve the retention of underrepresented minority students in STEM fields statewide.

“We are delighted that Vanderbilt University is the inaugural host for the Tennessee Bridge-to-the–Doctorate program,” said Dr. Lonnie Sharpe, Massie Chair of Excellence at Tennessee State University and TSLAMP executive director. “One of our goals is to increase the number of students attending graduate school. This award allows more of our students to transition into such programs. I am excited about this great opportunity for our students to continue their quest for doctoral degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.”

Tennessee State University leads TLSAMP and includes Fisk University, LeMoyne-Owen College, Middle Tennessee State University, Nashville State Community College, Southwest Tennessee Community College, Tennessee Technological University, University of Memphis, University of Tennessee – Knoxville and Vanderbilt. Each institution provides services that assist underrepresented minorities with the transition from high school to college, integrate them socially and academically into the university environment, and engage them in research and summer internship opportunities, and now include assisting to earn a Ph.D.

“We are thrilled to be working with TSU and our other Tennessee partners on this project. We all benefit by increasing the number of underrepresented minority students earning their Ph.D.s in these fields,” said Art Overholser, senior associate dean of the Vanderbilt School of Engineering and co-director of the new program. “The perspectives and talents of the students we hope to attract will not only enrich our research and teaching of STEM disciplines, but will serve as an example and inspiration for students to come.”

This is the second award in as many years for the TLSAMP from the National Science Foundation. In October 2013, TSU received a $2.5 million grant to increase the number of baccalaureate degrees awarded to students majoring in STEM disciplines while meeting the future needs of government, industry and education.

The five-year grant, said Sharpe, pays $493,207 per year and will impact nearly 3,800 underrepresented students throughout Tennessee at both ends of the collegiate pipeline, from community college to graduate school, and now the PH.D. level.

“These grants provides tremendous opportunities for us to increase the number of minority undergraduates and now Ph.Ds in the STEM field,” added Sharpe. “This will ultimately increase the number of students pursuing careers in the STEM workforce that drives the security and economy of our nation.”

 

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 45 undergraduate, 24 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

TSU Alum Named Regional Teacher of the Year

Whitney Bradley (courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – An alumna from Tennessee State University was recently named one of the best teachers in the state, selected by her peers as one who is, “leading the charge and making a real difference for students.”

Whitney Bradley, a teacher at Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School in Nashville, was named Teacher of the Year at her school and will compete for the Metro Nashville Public Schools district-wide Middle School Teacher of the Year. She was also named the Teacher of the Year for the Tennessee’s Mid-Cumberland region and will compete for the Tennessee Teacher of the Year award later this year.

“I am humbled,” said Bradley after winning these awards. “It is a blessing to bring positive attention to the school and to this community. I am honored because people count out our students and staff all the time and now we get to celebrate the goodness of Bailey Middle School and urban educators.”

Bradley, who graduated from TSU in 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, is in her second year as an eighth grade team leader at Bailey. She has also held positions at White Creek High School, and served as co-director of Camp Wisdom Summer enrichment program.

Bradley said that for her, teaching is a calling or a ministry of sorts. She loves working with the, “least of these,” because they need it the most.

“I love to see my (students) smash the menial expectations placed on them just because of their backgrounds or life circumstances,” she added. “They are lights and when they own it, I love it.”

Bradley is an instructional leader at Bailey, which allows her to work with students, and help mentor and lead a group of her colleagues to improve instructional practice through the, “Learning Through Practice” approach.

“This approach I can attribute to my days at TSU,” Bradley said. “Tennessee State taught me the value of professional collaboration and networking. I believe in highlighting the good in my team members so that we all shine together.

Working as a team allows teachers to teach to their own strengths. We hold each other accountable. “We work together to make sure the students understand the content.”

She said she also learned valuable “life lessons” at TSU, which she carried into the classroom, specifically citing Dr. Samantha Curtis, director of the Write program, who taught her about time management and not to forget what is important to her personally.

“It’s all about pacing,” said Bradley. “Dr. Curtis taught me that everyone doesn’t want 100 percent of me 100 percent of the time. That lesson has been invaluable in my classroom and at home. I love my students and give my all when I am teaching, but I still have some love left over for my son and loved ones at the end of the day. Its all about balance.”

All Teachers of the Year, including Bradley, will be celebrated at a formal dinner and awards ceremony May 11 at Lipscomb University’s Allen Arena, where district-level winners will be chosen.

 

 

Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 42 undergraduate, 24 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

TSU Engineering Dean Co-Authors Book Aimed at Helping Minority Faculty Members

HargroveNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – A professor from Tennessee State University has co-authored a book aimed at helping minority faculty members succeed during their academic career at higher-education institutions while offering useful strategies for recruiting, retaining and advancing women and minorities.

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering, and Dr. Pauline Mosley, associate professor of Information Technology at Pace University, collaborated for nearly 10 years on their book, Navigating Academia: A Guide for Women and Minority STEM Faculty, because, according to Hargrove, the need for minority faculty and their success in academia is “critical.”

bookNavigating Academia: A Guide for Women and Minority STEM Faculty explores the infrastructure of the academy and provides a systematic account of where and why women and minorities fall behind men in the preparation for and development of their academic careers. The book includes testimonials from faculty and administrators about how they made their ascent within the academy.

“There is a great need right now for minority faculty in institutions across the country,” said Hargrove. “Minorities currently represent 5 percent of faculty members, and their presence and success in navigating the career pathway is important for attracting and increasing the pipeline of new faculty. It is also important for the workforce of the nation.”

Hargrove knows all too well the difficulty some minority faculty may have navigating their career path. Having been in academia for nearly two decades, he has drawn on his own experience as a starting point. He has risen through the ranks from associate professor to dean of the College, as well as work as a research engineer at three major research laboratories and universities.

“I’ve been mentored by many individuals throughout my industrial and academic career, and my achievements are not mine alone,” he added. “They were the result of many supporters and advocates within my social network of personal and professional colleagues that have provided great experiences. Now I am able to share some of what I learned and help others be successful.”

Over the last five years, Hargrove has compiled some of his experiences with other colleagues to published the book which provides insight and reflections on how to succeed in academia for women and minority STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) faculty.

“After taking leadership roles in engineering education, I’ve tried to continue the same level of mentoring I did with students only now with faculty members,” said Hargrove. “Of course I am no expert, but I’ve tried to help the minority STEM faculty navigate outreach activities, research and strategies to become a better instructor. I hope my experiences can help other faculty members achieve their personal and career goals.”

Hargrove’s book also discusses how to modify and expand faculty-recruiting programs, how to diversify search committees, how to encourage intervention by deans, and how to assess past hiring efforts. This guide is an important resource for women and minorities seeking success in the academy as well as for administrators focused on faculty and professional development.

And what does Hargrove hope readers take away from the book?

“I think this is an opportunity for the reader to better understand the academic career pathway, learn from the experiences of others, and develop their own pathway for success in the academy,” Hargrove said. “Each of us is responsible for our own success…and I believe this publication can help make that process more achievable.”

 

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Department of Media Relations

Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With more than 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 42 undergraduate, 24 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

Tennessee State University Dedicates Cutting-edge Research Facilities to Accommodate “Phenomenal” Growth in Agricultural Sciences

The College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences dedicated three new buildings September 17 on campus, including the centerpiece of the additions, the Agricultural Biotechnology Building. The added lab space and updated equipment in the  state-of-the-art $8 million Agricultural Biotechnology Building will provide more room for cutting-edge research, with implications for farmers and consumers in Tennessee and beyond. Helping with the ribbon cutting ceremony include (L-R) Julius Johnson, Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Agriculture; John Morgan, Tennessee Board of Regents Chancellor; TSU President Glenda Glover; USDA Mid South assistant area director Archie Tucker; Dean Chandra Reddy; and State Representatives Brenda Gilmore and Harold Love(photo by Rick DelaHaya, TSU Media Relations)
The College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences dedicated three new buildings on campus September 17, including the centerpiece of the additions, the Agricultural Biotechnology Building. The added lab space and updated equipment in the state-of-the-art $8 million Agricultural Biotechnology Building will provide more room for cutting-edge research, with implications for farmers and consumers in Tennessee and beyond. Helping with the ribbon cutting ceremony include (L-R) Julius Johnson, Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Agriculture; John Morgan, Tennessee Board of Regents Chancellor; TSU President Glenda Glover; USDA Mid South assistant area director Archie Tucker; Dean Chandra Reddy; and State Representatives Brenda Gilmore and Harold Love (photo by Rick DelaHaya, TSU Media Relations)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – With graduate enrollment in agricultural sciences at Tennessee State University more than tripled in five years and an influx of new Ph.D. faculty topping more than 25 in just three years, University officials are celebrating the addition of new facilities to accommodate this “phenomenal” growth.

Today, TSU President Glenda Glover, joined by Dean Chandra Reddy, Chancellor John Morgan, of the Tennessee Board of Regents, and other University officials, federal and state stakeholders and elected official, held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for three new buildings on campus.

The buildings, with a combined price tag of more than $12 million, were funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture through its National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

The centerpiece of the new facilities is the 25,000 square-foot Agricultural Biotechnology Building, the first new building constructed at the University in nearly eight years. It contains more than 12 state-of-the-art labs for cutting-edge research, including DNA synthesis and chromatography analysis. The building will also house and support primarily agricultural research, and provide working space for more than 20 new Ph.D.-level scientists, as well as administrative offices.

The other two facilities, called the Agricultural and STEM Education and Training Center, and the Agricultural Research Support Building, are located on the University farm.

“Tennessee State University is preparing students who are ready for the workforce,” said a very upbeat President Glover, as she thanked the USDA, the TBR, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture and other stakeholders for their support in making the buildings a reality.

“This is such a wonderful opportunity. With these facilities, our students will benefit tremendously by engaging in cutting-edge research in food safety and security, and by expanding their knowledge in their quest for excellence,” the President added.

Dr. Hongwei Si, Assistant Professor of Food Chemistry, explains some of the research projects going on in the Food Biosciences and Technology Lab, as visitors, including Dean Chandra Reddy, and TBR Chancellor John Morgan, far right, listen. (photo by Rick Delahaya, TSU Media Relations)
Dr. Hongwei Si, Assistant Professor of Food Chemistry, explains some of the research projects going on in the Food Biosciences and Technology Lab, as visitors, including Dean Chandra Reddy, and TBR Chancellor John Morgan, far right, listen. (photo by Rick Delahaya, TSU Media Relations)

For Dean Reddy, he said research funding in the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences has tripled to couple with climbing enrollment on the undergraduate and graduate levels.

“This dedication and these buildings memorialize the ongoing transformation in the college over the last five years,” Reddy said. “We have multiplied every useful metrics during this time, be it student enrollment, research funding and outreach.”

He said the college has integrated academics with research and outreach and extension, established faculty focus groups to provide intellectual leadership to their programs, as well as created new opportunities for students to get involved in research and outreach.

The need for continued investment in agriculture and the food sciences is tremendous, he said, reminding the gathering about the expected growth in human population and the risk of climate change and its effect on food crops, and the impact of food on “our” overall health and wellbeing.

“To address these fundamental problems, our research is focusing on developing crops and products for health, for climate change, for energy, and ultimately alleviate the problems facing the world today and in the future,” added Reddy.

TBR Chancellor Morgan, who described the dedication as very significant, also thanked the USDA, President Glover, Dr. Reddy and other stakeholders for their support.

“This is very significant because it reflects the commitment of this University to excellence and to producing students who are capable and ready for the workforce anywhere in the country and the world.”

While the dedication of the new facilities was the focus of today’s ceremony, a presentation by a TSU student received tremendous cheers from the audience, and caught the attention of several speakers and stakeholders with job offers for the Agricultural Sciences major from Chicago.

Kourtney Daniels
Kourtney Daniels

Kourtney Daniels, a sophomore with a 4.0 GPA, serving as a TSU Student Ambassador, had only to give the welcome remarks, but her “very eloquent,” three-minute presentation drew praises even she did not expect.

“I was just being myself; I did not expect to have such an impact,” said Daniels.

Others also participating in today’s dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony were: Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Mark Hardy; State Representative Brenda Gilmore, a TSU alum, who has championed many causes on the state and national levels for her alma mater; and Tennessee Agriculture Commissioner, Julius Johnson.

State Representative Harold Love Jr.; Archie Tucker, assistant director of the Mid South Area for the USDA’s Agricultural Research Services; Steve Gass, of the Tennessee Department of Education; Dr. Roger Sauve, superintendent of the Agricultural Research and Education Center at TSU; and Ron Brooks, associate vice president for Facilities Management, also took part in the dedication.

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 42 undergraduate, 24 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

Tennessee State University and Southwest Tennessee Community Agree on Seamless Student Transfer

President Glenda Glover, left, and President Nathan Essex, of Southwest Tennessee Community College, sign the Student Transfer Partnership Agreement. Witnessing the ceremony are, standing from left, Dr. John Cade, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Support Services; Karen F. Nippert, Southwest VP for Institutional Advancement; Dr. Sharon Peters, Director of Community College Initiative; Dr. Mark Hardy, Vice President for Academic Affairs; Southwest student Reginald Deon Woods; Barbara Roseborough, Southwest Provost and Executive Vice President; and Dr. Alisa Mosley, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. (photo byJohn Cross, TSU Media Relations)
President Glenda Glover, left, and President Nathan Essex, of Southwest Tennessee Community College, sign the Student Transfer Partnership Agreement. Witnessing the ceremony are, standing from left, Dr. John Cade, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Support Services; Karen F. Nippert, Southwest VP for Institutional Advancement; Dr. Sharon Peters, Director of Community College Initiative; Dr. Mark Hardy, Vice President for Academic Affairs; Southwest student Reginald Deon Woods; Barbara Roseborough, Southwest Provost and Executive Vice President; and Dr. Alisa Mosley, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. (photo byJohn Cross, TSU Media Relations)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – With officials from the two institutions watching, Tennessee State University and Southwest Tennessee Community College Thursday signed an agreement that will allow students who complete two years at Southwest to transfer to TSU to complete their baccalaureate degree.

TSU President Glenda Glover and Southwest President Nathan Essex signed the Transfer Partnership Agreement during a ceremony on the Southwest campus in Memphis.

“This agreement is about two institutions taking steps to empower our students to be successful,” said Dr. Glover in an opening statement. “The agreement further strengthens our partnership, and gives Southwest students additional choices for aligning associate degrees with bachelor’s degrees through Tennessee State University.”

Referring to the agreement as “important and significant,” Southwest President Essex agreed with Dr. Glover’s assessment that it provides opportunities for students to be successful.

“We are here to ensure that our students are successful, and this partnership with Tennessee State University strengthens that effort,” Dr. Essex said, commending President Glover for her leadership. “She has done a phenomenal job in just two years, and her vision speaks well to the quality of her leadership.”

The agreement between the two institutions calls for the awarding of 10 two-year full TSU scholarships with preference to STEM majors, beginning fall 2015, The partnership also includes a dual-admission component that builds on the Tennessee Transfer Pathway, which is designed to help community college students plan for transferring to a Tennessee public university to complete their baccalaureate degree.

Two second-year Southwest pre-engineering students who attended the signing ceremony, see the agreement as timely and offers “much needed outlet” to complete their undergraduate degrees.

Reginald Deon Woods, a Computer Engineering major, and Christian Pavas, an Engineering Technology major, who plan to attend TSU at the completion of their associate degrees, said the University has the programs and offerings they need for their baccalaureate degrees.

“The opportunity to seamlessly transfer our credits and the scholarship opportunity the agreement offers are just great,” said Pavas. “I look forward to continuing my program at Tennessee State.”

Following the ceremony, President Glover spoke about the effort that went into bringing the agreement into fruition, giving special recognition to her senior administration including officials of the office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Enrollment Management, and the Dean of the College of Engineering.

“I want to thank all of you for your work in helping us to bring this agreement into reality,” Dr. Glover said. “I want to particularly thank Dr. Sharon Peters (Director of Community College Initiative), and Dr. (S. Keith) Hargrove, the dean of the College of Engineering for working so diligently with Southwest Community College to bring about this agreement.”

The agreement is part of TSU’s on-going effort to reach out to all 13 community colleges around the state to develop long-lasting partnerships and relationships. Currently, there are agreements with Volunteer State, Nashville State, Columbia State, Motlow State Community Colleges, and soon Southwest Tennessee Community College. There are hopes to sign agreements with four additional institutions within the next year.

Among other TSU officials at the signing ceremony were Dr. Mark Hardy, vice president for Academic Affairs; Dr. John Cade, interim vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Support Services; Dr. Alisa Mosley, associate vice president for Academic Affairs; and Kelli Sharp, assistant vice president for Public Relations and Communications.

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 42 undergraduate, 24 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

Two TSU Engineering Majors Capture Top Awards at National STEM Conference

Waled Tayib, a senior, left, received second place award, while Daniel Henke, a junior, took first place in the undergraduate oral and poster presentation at the Emerging Research National Conference in Washington, D.C.  The students are both Electrical and Computer Engineering majors. (courtesy photo)
Waled Tayib, a senior, left, received second place award, while Daniel Henke, a junior, took first place in the undergraduate oral and poster presentation at the Emerging Research National Conference in Washington, D.C. The students are both Electrical and Computer Engineering majors. (courtesy photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University students continue to make their mark in science, technology, engineering and mathematics on the national scene in a big way.

At the just ended 2014 Emerging Research National Conference in STEM held in Washington, D.C., two Electrical and Computer Engineering majors captured top awards for research presentations.

Daniel Henke, a junior, received first place award, while Waled Tayib, a senior, took second place in the undergraduate oral and poster presentation.

Henke received his award in the Technology and Engineering category, while Tayib’s award was in Information Systems. Cyber security, with emphases on cyber physical system and smartphone security, was the focus of their research projects.

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering, attributed the success of the two TSU students to the college’s continued emphasis on research, pointing to evidence that suggests that students engaged in research as undergraduates have a higher graduation rate.

“I strongly encourage all students, but certainly our best students, to become engaged in research as undergraduates,” Hargrove said.  “The experience helps relate their curriculum content, enhances the relationship with faculty, and develops key career skills for marketability and professional development.”

The three-day ERN conference, hosted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the National Science Foundation Division of Human Resource Development, brought together more than 200 participants from across the country.

Aimed at college and university undergraduate and graduate students who participate in programs funded by the NSF and the HRD Unit, the conference was intended to enhance participants’ science communication skills, as well as help them better understand how to prepare for STEM careers in a global workforce.

According to Hargrove, the TSU students presented research on projects being conducted at the College of Engineering, funded by NSF HBCU-UP Targeted Infusion and Research Initiation Awards.

Dr. Sachin Shetty, assistant professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and the lead on the cyber security research at TSU, is the advisor for Henke and Tayib, Hargrove said.

“The cyber security research efforts at TSU have received significant support from NSF-HRD. This conference provided a platform for the students working on cyber security research projects to showcase their research efforts to a large audience of students and faculty from various institutions. The feedback from the students and faculty was immensely helpful in improving the quality of their research work,” Hargrove added.

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331

 

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 22 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.

NSF Funding Helps College of Engineering Support Local High School STEM Programs

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The College of Engineering has received several grants from the National Science Foundation related to developing simulation and gaming modules to enhance learning in engineering education. These research projects engaged undergraduate and graduate students in developing simulations in machine design and graphics.

In support of STEM Education in Metro Nashville Public Schools, the College of Engineering is also assisting with the creation of the gaming and simulation laboratory at Stratford STEM Magnet High School, under a partnership with the National Safety and Security Technologies Academy at Stratford.

Dr. S. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering, who has been affiliated with Stratford High for more than two years, serves as an advisor to the NSST academy, as it transforms the curriculum to STEM disciplines and careers.

“Our college is committed to supporting K-12 education and partnering with MNPS through the Pencil Foundation, and playing a key role in educating future engineering students from our local community,” Hargrove said.

The Foundation, which administers eight educational programs involving volunteers and mentors, links community resources with Metro Nashville Public Schools. It also provides academic enrichment opportunities, and prepares students for graduation.

As part of the COE/NSST partnership, a group of six students and two instructors from Stratford Magnet High School participated in a Virtual Reality Workshop on Oct. 10 at Tennessee State University. The workshop, conducted by Dr. Sachin Shetty, assistant professor of Electrical Engineering, introduced the students to software tools used in commercial Virtual Reality systems.

According to Dr. Shetty, participants gained practical experience creating simulations with Vizard, a 3D engine used to create Virtual Reality Applications.

This was a step up from the 2D gaming module the students had previously been exposed to, according to Roger Osborne, one of the Stratford instructors. “The experience of creating a 3D virtual world and learning techniques to animate 3D characters and objects was extremely valuable,” he said.  “The students were able to ‘learn by doing’ through a sequence of exercises geared toward exposing them to development of a 3D virtual reality game.”

Osborne expressed interest in deploying the Vizard software in the Stratford gaming labs, as well as adopting it to the school’s criminal justice program to help students create an investigative scene in a 3D virtual world.

 

 

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John A. Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209
615.963.5331


About Tennessee State University

With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university and is a comprehensive, urban, coeducational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 22 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top Universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912 Tennessee State University celebrates 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu

TSU Receives $1.2 Million NSF Grant to Inspire Students to Teach Math, Science in Schools

NSF_logoNASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Math and Science teachers are desperately needed in schools in Nashville and across the state to help prepare the country’s youth for a labor market dominated by jobs in science and technology.

Tennessee State University will now be doing its part to inspire students to teach in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, when it was recently announced that the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences was awarded $1.2 million to support and prepare STEM majors to become K-12 teachers.

Dr. Elaine Martin, associate professor of Biology, College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences. Martin and her team of professors and instructors won a $1.2 million National Science Foundation grant to encourage students to teach science and math to elementary, middle and high school students in high-need districts. (courtesy photo)
Dr. Elaine Martin, associate professor of Biology, College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences. Martin and her team of professors and instructors won a $1.2 million National Science Foundation grant to encourage students to teach science and math to elementary, middle and high school students in high-need districts. (courtesy photo)

Funded through the National Science Foundation’s Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program, the grant will support “Project Tiger Teach,” a new program designed to help train students majoring in biology, chemistry or mathematics receive their teacher certification, who will in turn, land jobs teaching in high-need school districts.

The program, according to Dr. Elaine Martin, associate professor of Biology and director of the project, will be a collaborative partnership between the University and the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools System. The goals of the partnership are to increase the number of highly-qualified certified, high school STEM teachers in high-need schools in the Nashville area, increase teacher diversity with emphasis on recruiting African-American male STEM teachers, and provide four years of mentoring and professional development opportunities to graduates.

“This is a great opportunity for TSU to recruit and support students with strong science and math backgrounds into higher education,” added Martin. “Over the next four years, the Noyce grant will allow us to recruit individuals into the program with strong STEM backgrounds who might otherwise not have considered a career in K-12 teaching.”

Another outcome of the project will be to place teachers from underrepresented groups such as African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans into the same type classroom category and increase the student-to-teacher ratio of both groups.

“A recent survey of students enrolled in biology and mathematics courses at TSU revealed that 30 percent are interested in considering teaching math or science in K-12 schools,” said Martin, “while 40 percent would consider obtaining teacher licensure in math or science if they could obtain it within their four-year college program.

“Additionally, an overwhelming 66 percent of participants surveyed would consider obtaining a teaching license and teach at least five years in K-12 schools if full tuition and a summer internship were provided. Through this program, we anticipate an increase in high school and post-secondary graduation rates that will address Tennessee’s and the nation’s shortage of STEM professionals.”

When the program kicks off, scholarship money will support a total of 40 undergraduate students over the next four years to go through Project Tiger Teach. Each year, three students majoring in biology, two in chemistry and five in mathematics will be assisted by the program.

Students wishing to apply for the program must have completed 60 credit hours with a minimum GPA of 3.0.  The Noyce grant provides scholarships in the amount of $12,000 per year for a period of two years for the future classroom leaders to complete their degrees with teacher certification.  They must agree to teach two years for each year of scholarship support in a “high needs” school district in Tennessee and the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools.

Participants will also take part in summer institutes that include tutoring high school students in the Regents Math Academy and Tennessee State University’s Math and Science Center. By the end of their sophomore year, Noyce Scholars are admitted to the teacher certification program in biology, chemistry or mathematics.

Before their senior year, students must then complete four educational courses and all required content courses in preparation for the MNPS high school-based Residency I and Residency II.

“The extended residency will produce highly-qualified teachers who have mastered content knowledge, and understand the learning process and application of assessment results to improve instruction,” added Martin.

Along with Martin, the grant was awarded to co-directors Dr. Jeanetta Jackson, Department of Mathematics; Dr. Heraldo Richards, College of Education; and Dr. Artenzia Young-Seigler, Department of Biological Sciences.

“This project will be a boost to the College’s STEM education and teacher preparation efforts, particularly for minority populations,” said Dr. Chandra Reddy, Dean of the College of Agriculture, Human and Natural Sciences. “This is a prestigious grant our faculty received that will give us the opportunity to work together with Metro School system in preparing and in serving their STEM teacher needs. It is a win-win project for TSU and the community.”

The Noyce scholarship is named for Robert Noyce, co-founder of Intel Corp and the scientist awarded the 1961 patent for the integrated semiconductor. The scholarship was funded through the NSF Authorization Act of 2002 in response to a critical need for teachers in science and math.

 

 

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About Tennessee State University

With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university and is a comprehensive, urban, coeducational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 22 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top Universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912 Tennessee State University celebrates 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu